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Tech Tuesday - Gravity Dropper Rebuild

May 29, 2012
by Mike Levy  
Gravity Dropper Turbo rebuild
The Gravity Dropper is likely the simplest telescoping seat post available, consisting of relatively few parts and often going for long periods of time before requiring maintenance. Even the Gravity Dropper will need some love after awhile, though, becoming slow and rough if its internals become contaminated. Thankfully the job is relatively easy to perform.

What's needed:
• 6mm hex key
• Lithium based grease
• Clean rag
• Medium strength Loc-Tite

Some helpful pointers
• We removed the post from the bike in order to better show the process, but leaving the remote on your handlebar will make it easier to activate.
• The post's action is very dependent on how tight or loose the upper collar has been tightened onto the outer tube. Too loose and the saddle will rattle, but too tight and it won't cycle up and down freely.
• A light grease will keep the post moving freely, but a thicker grease will slow its action down slightly.
• Always double check that the post locks into all positions after a rebuild before hitting the trails.

Gravity Dropper Turbo rebuild
Step 1 - Remove the post from your bike and wipe off any grease and grime that might be present. Use a long 6mm hex key to turn the bottom cap nut (located up in the bottom of the post) counterclockwise until it threads out of the post. Note that the cap is under pressure from the post's return spring - aim away from your face. Remove the black plastic spacer and spring.
Gravity Dropper Turbo rebuild
Step 2 - Inspect and pull the rubber boot up and off of the post's collar, then turn it counterclockwise until it is completely off of the outer tube's threads. This will allow you to remove the inner tube from the post.
Gravity Dropper Turbo rebuild
Step 3 - Push and hold the remote lever (so that the pin fully retracts) while pulling up on the saddle. Slide the inner tube up and out of the post.
Gravity Dropper Turbo rebuild
Step 4 - Use a rag to wipe the upper tube clean of any dirt and grime, giving the plastic shims extra attention. Clean out the pin holes on the upper tube (we used the end of a pen, shown above), and remove any dirt within the outer tube.
Gravity Dropper rebuild
Step 5 - Apply a light coat of lithium based grease to the inner tube, making sure to coat the plastic bushings. A dab of medium strength Loc-Tite on the collar threads will help hold the collar in the correct position.
Gravity Dropper Turbo rebuild
Step 6 - Push and hold the lever in the open postion while inserting the inner tube back into the outer tube, making sure that the upper bushing fits into the slots in order to fully seat properly. Thread the collar down finger tight until it stops - do not tighten forcefully.
Gravity Dropper Turbo rebuild
Step 7 -With the post at full extension, slide the spring and black plastic spacer back up into the bottom of the post. Thread the bottom cap nut by turning it clockwise until it stops snuggly.

Step 8 - Reinstall the post into your bike and check the action by cycling it up and down. If the collar is too tight the post will not release, but if it is too loose there will be play when the saddle is at full height. Tighten or loosen the collar accordingly and then pull the rubber boot back over top.

Past Tech Tuesdays:
TT #1 - How to change a tube.
TT #2 - How to set up your SRAM rear derailleur
TT #3 - How to remove and install pedals
TT #4 - How To Bleed Your Avid Elixir Brakes
TT #5 - How To Check And Adjust Your Headset
TT #6 - How To Fix A Broken Chain
TT #7 - Tubeless Conversion
TT #8 - Chain Wear
TT #9 - SRAM Shift Cable Replacement
TT #10 - Removing And Installing a Headset
TT #11 - Chain Lube Explained
TT #12 - RockShox Totem and Lyric Mission Control Damper Mod
TT #13 - Shimano XT Crank and Bottom Bracket Installation
TT #14 - Straightening Your Derailleur Hanger
TT #15 - Setting Up Your Front Derailleur
TT #16 - Setting Up Your Cockpit
TT #17 - Suspension Basics
TT #18 - Adjusting The Fox DHX 5.0
TT #19 - Adjusting The RockShox BoXXer World Cup
TT #20 - Servicing Your Fox Float Shock
TT #21 - Wheel Truing Basics
TT #22 - Shimano Brake Pad Replacement
TT #23 - Shimano brake bleed
TT #24 - Fox Lower Leg Removal And Service
TT #25 - RockShox Motion Control Service
TT #26 - Avid BB7 Cable Disk Brake Setup
TT #27 - Manitou Dorado Fork Rebuild
TT #28 - Manitou Circus Fork Rebuild
TT #29 - MRP G2 SL Chain Guide Install
TT #30 - Cane Creek Angleset Installation
TT #31 - RockShox Maxle Lite DH
TT #32 - Find Your Tire Pressure Sweet Spot
TT #33 - Three Minute Bike Preflight Check
TT #34 - MRP XCG Install
TT #35 - Stem Choice and Cockpit Setup
TT #36 - Handlebars - How Wide Affects Your Ride
TT #37 - Repairing A Torn Tire
TT #38 - Coil spring swap
TT #39 - Trailside help: Broken Shift Cable
TT #40 - Installing a Fox Float Air-Volume Spacer
TT #41 - Replace the Seals on Your 2011 RockShox Boxxer World Cup Fork
TT #42 - Clean and Lubricate Your Fox F32 Dust Wiper Seals
TT #43 - Thread Locker Basics
TT #44 - Install a SRAM X.0 Two-By-Ten Crankset
TT #45 - VPP Suspension Bearing Service
TT #46 - Rotor Straightening
TT #47 - Finding and fixing that creak
TT #48 - Bleed and Service Magura Marta Disc Brakes
TT #49 - Cup and Cone Hub Basics
TT #50 - Install and Adjust Pedal Cleats
TT #51 - Cup and Cone Hub Rebuild
TT #52 - Converting Mavic Crossmax SX Axles
TT #53 - Cassette Removal and Installation
TT #54 - Cane Creek AngleSet Installation
TT #55 - American Classic Tubeless Conversion
TT #56 - Wider Rims Are Better and Why Tubeless Tires Burp Air
TT #57 - Pedal Pin Retrofit
TT #58 - Bleed RockShox Reverb Remote Lines
TT #59 - Cutting Carbon
TT #60 - Silence That Squeaky Disc Brake
TT #61 - Five Minute Wheel True
TT #62 - Removing Bike Rack Rattle
TT #63 - Inside Shimano's Shadow Plus Mech and How To Adjust It
TT #64 - Steerer tube length
TT #65 - Marzocchi 44 Rebuild
TT #66 - RockShox BoXXer TLC
TT #67 - Ghetto Tubeless Tire Inflator
TT # 68 - RockShox BoXXer Seal Replacement
TT #69 - Ghetto Dropper Post
TT #70 - FSA Orbit Option Install
TT #71 - How to Bleed Formula Disc Brakes
TT #72 - Crankbrothers Kronolog Cable Replacement
TT #73 - Three Ways to Save A Leaky Tubeless Tire
TT #74 - Chain Length Basics
TT #75 - Tech Tuesday: DH Helmet vs. Motocross Helmet
TT #76 - RockShox Vivid Air Tuning 2012
TT #77 - Negative Spring Tech

Author Info:
mikelevy avatar

Member since Oct 18, 2005
2,032 articles

  • 17 2
 i long for the days when tech tuesdays were videos. helps hamfisted hacks like me immensely. but still thank you!!!
  • 18 1
 you mean like last week?
  • 7 2
 Fashionistas don't like the Gravity Dropper but its still about the most reliable thing out there. Having said that, even skeptics like me who've been emotionally scarred by the complete crap that is the Crank Brothers Joplin are now finding that the Reverb and the KS posts are quite a bit more reliable now than before. But for longevity Gravity Dropper still wins. Thanks for this super useful Tech Tuesday Mike
  • 10 13
 I hate the GD because:

a.) it's ugly as hell,
b.) it doesn't drop low enough,
c.) it doesn't stop just anywhere you want,
d.) it comes back up way too quickly,
e.) it doesn't lock down securely enough, and...
f.) did I mention it's ugly?
  • 6 2
 seraph you have a carbon nomad which means you're almost likely a fashionista but that's not so bad because it is one of the most drop-dead gorgeous bikes around. I do agree that the GD's return can bruise nutsacks if you're not used to it.
  • 7 9
 Actually I have a Santa Cruz Nickel with a Rock Shox Reverb, but I used to have a KS Supernatural on it. I did have a Nomad C though. It was a nice bike. I'm going to assume that you're one of those hippies who thinks that you have to have a bike that no one has ever heard of in order to be cool.
  • 12 4
 I'm not sure why you think being a fashionista is not cool. You are incredibly defensively butthurt about it. Did I interrupt a chest-shaving exercise? Or is being an ass just your personal thing? There's nothing wrong with liking beautiful parts and my wisecrack was at the fact that the GD is ugly.... but it works and works well.
  • 3 2
 You've never heard of Knolly, Rocky Mountain or Specialized? Right...............
  • 5 4
 You're both out of your minds... Facepalm
  • 1 0
 At seraph, I agree with all, especially e. Just had a buddy crash hard because his post extended to full height mid drop. Got bounced over the bars upon landing and thrown on his face. Separated collar bone and another set of stitches in his already zippered face.
  • 5 1
 I do all of that without taking the spring out, seems to work fine. Smile
The cable can be the biggest headache because the lever is so crap and lets moisture in. Better of changing the cable to some teflon coated one and filling the lever casing with grease. Or change the lever with some type of fork lockout lever.
  • 2 1
 Any experience with alternative levers out there?
  • 2 0
 there's so few about and such a gap in the market for aftermarket levers. Most OEM ones are naff - not ergonomic, cheap and tacky. It would be easy to make a new lever to fit universal gear/brake cables.
  • 1 0
 The descender is non-remote. I'd rather use that.
  • 5 2
 I've had the original GD for 5 or 6 years. It has been one of the lowest maintenance moving parts on my bike. Simple to service. Works and works and works. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
  • 2 0
 Best dropper post I have used yet, and the most dependable. Not to mention it adds the least weight of any dropper post to your bike. 9 years of use without a failure! No hydrolic post can even come close to that. If you hate the look of the lever wait a couple months I'm working on a better one. Just started working on it but it shouldn't take too long. If GD won't use my design I'll have them made and sell them my self. I've worked out the cable routing from the post as well but they haven't implemented it yet. Trailridersusa.com Coming soon
  • 1 0
 @jaacck: True, Gravity Dropper is an independent, but their Customer Service is top notch. Nice folks who go above and beyond really and that sentiment is echoed by other guys I ride with. GD is not the most refined post, but it is reliable, easy to work on, and CS is excellent.
  • 2 1
 I agree with jaack. I ran a GD for a three years and thought it was great, but when it eventually broke I picked up a reverb and I love it. one year in no problems
  • 1 0
 how did it break? think it was something that could've been prevented?
  • 2 0
 YES! I have wanted one of these tutorials for a long time now. Thank you pinkbike!
  • 2 1
 I'm right about to buy a gravity dropper, but still on the fence on a new reverb. this may have just pushed me to the GD
  • 6 4
 Get a reverb, you wont be disappointed.
  • 7 6
 I got the Reverb and have been extremely disappointed. +1 GD.
  • 5 3
 Gravity Dropper over anything else on the market at the moment. If you don't mind its looks.
  • 2 1
 I found the GD didn't drop low enough for me. The 'stack height' in the low position is higher than most. I went with the Specialized 125mm post and have been stoked. the collet design is pretty smart and reliable. After the joplin, I'm weary of hydrolic actuation. This has to be the easiest rebuild though. hands down!
  • 1 0
 well my problem now lies in either the reliability of the gravity dropper, but the smooth actuation of the leaver on the reverb since its all hydro.
  • 1 1
 @ shrockie - "after the joplin" i'm not surprised, its CB haha.

@ gaudio56 - reverb everytime. you get something that is from a well known company, rather than an independent company. good customer service. reverb works great, looks good too. hydro is good, there is a reason why we are running hydro brakes right? I am going to be blunt and say the reverb is the best dropper post in the market now (imo). period.
  • 1 1
 The plastic spacer is it in the right place?
Is it the part number 74
  • 3 1
 Thanks for rebuilding my post Mike. I owe you.
  • 1 0
 240 bucks for a seatpost...?? Serious?? For me that as usefull as a titanium bottle cage!
  • 3 0
 Obviously you've never ridden a dropper post then. They are game changing if you live in the mountains.
  • 1 0
 where does one buy lithium based lube? LBS?
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